SEATTLE (AP) — New York Yankees sparkplug Matt Carpenter said Wednesday he expects to return this season and won’t need surgery on his broken left foot.
Carpenter saw a specialist in Seattle on Wednesday morning before the Yankees’ series finale against the Mariners. Carpenter fouled a pitch off his left foot in Monday’s series opener and is expected to be out at least six weeks.
“I’m very encouraged, very encouraged that we avoided surgery and got a clean break that just needs to heal and we’ll see how long it takes,” Carpenter said.
Carpenter said he still expects to see one more specialist back in New York, but most opinions have been universal in a course of treatment moving forward.
The AL East leaders play their final regular-season game in eight weeks, on Oct. 5.
Carpenter was injured when he fouled a slider from starter Logan Gilbert off the foot in the first inning on Monday night. The left-handed hitter was briefly checked by manager Aaron Boone, but finished the at-bat and struck out swinging on the next pitch.
“I’m going to do whatever I can to speed the process up and we’ll see how it goes,” Carpenter said. “I don’t like to put any kind of restriction on me or any kind of timeline, but when I feel like I can come back I’m going to be ready to go.”
The three-time All-Star was one of the feel-good stories in baseball this year while enjoying a comeback season at age 36. Carpenter was toiling at Triple-A when the Texas Rangers released him in May. He signed with the Yankees and became a big surprise, earning regular playing time in a powerful lineup.
Carpenter has been a designated hitter, infielder and outfielder for the Yankees.
Carpenter is hitting .305 with 15 home runs and 37 RBIs in just 128 at-bats. He batted below .200 in each of the previous two seasons with St. Louis.